FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) has built his personal reputation as one of the largest exchanges in the cryptocurrency industry by dazzling the media, the public and politicians. Axios reporter Brady Dale believes it was his pursuit of SBF fame that ultimately led to his downfall.
Dale’s best-selling Amazon Economics book, SBF: How The FTX Bankruptcy Unwound Crypto’s Very Bad Good Guy. I will give you the chapter.
Chapter 1: I Want to Believe
I am obsessed with Sam. he is everywhere. And unlike other CEOs who have had as spectacular a decline as his, he doesn’t come to me indirectly through journalists who examine his journey.
This flood of information is Sam. he doesn’t stop It’s as if he doesn’t know how to stop. I want to wrap up an FTX story, but how do I tell it through the noise of Sam Bankman-Fried? This is SBF. He never ceases to retell events in his own highly biased and mysterious interpretation, with a snarky, overly informative narrative.
I am writing this sentence at the halfway point of writing this book on SBF. Today is December 1, 2022. After working at news site Axios, I was trying to make time to do a little research on a company that one of SBF’s companies, Alameda Research, was backing, but there was a cryptocurrency worth hundreds of millions of dollars. I received a message that SBF, which has lost its assets, will hold a Twitter space.
Twitter Spaces is a feature that allows a few people to have audio-only conversations online that can be heard by hundreds or thousands of others. Spaces have become a popular place for high-profile accounts to get their message across. And from November 2022 to early December now, SBF is hellbent on spreading the message.
Prior to this, SBF appeared on anchor George Stephanopoulous’s morning information show. I haven’t seen that program yet. In addition, the New York Times also relayed an SBF interview online by journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin. Haven’t seen it yet either. As far as I know, I’m the only one in the media industry who hasn’t seen these. I’m too busy writing this book right now to watch the videos you can watch anytime. I will look at it later. But now SBF is starting to talk to the purported journalist on Twitter again. I was unlucky to hear that.
I heard a little bit, but it was more aggravating than helpful information. Too much information about him. I’m drowning
Sam never stops exposing. People say that such frequent media appearances are PR masterpieces engineered by wizard-level publicists trained in the black magic of problem-solving.
But such a view is from the PR side, perhaps from the clients of the PR firm. This was not a PR. PR is like a sandstorm in my day job. It’s a mess of meaningless bullets of banal monotony, in which you must desperately search for credible opinions. Much of PR is about risk aversion, but what SBF was doing is different.
This was Sam. Constant media exposure was born out of his needs. It was all Sam.
Too many sam.
I am obsessed with Sam.
December 1, 2022
Sam Bankman-Fried offers a story you’ll want to believe. A talkative billionaire young man who tried to solve the world’s problems by generating military funds like a thief baron from the engine that creates wealth called crypto assets.
I was supposed to be like Andrew Carnegie, who donated to build the library. Who doesn’t like the Carnegie Library? I had one in my small town in Kansas, too. Beautiful building.
But Andrew Carnegie was able to build such a library in part because he hired thugs to weed out union workers who wanted better conditions. It’s not a good story now. Originally, the money to build it should have gone to some of our grandparents’ age.
The SBF did not build up its military with evil things like factories that pollute the air and working conditions that are harmful to health. The SBF’s war fund was created from the Internet. They are scraping pieces of pure gold from the digital money flying around the blockchain. Far from polluting many people’s yards, blockchain seems unreal.
Then, if a good young man appears, builds wealth, and can help many people with that wealth, what kind of inconvenience will it cause?
SBF was attractive. Many people were drawn into such stories. I was one of them. I also believed that SBF believed in the story he told himself. As singer Bonnie Tyler sang in 1984, and as we all feel today, we all need heroes.
I would like to ask you this question.
What if it was good for us all that SBF didn’t try to save the world?
What if he was the hero that no one ever wanted?
What if the lessons learned from SBF were actually: “The last thing anyone needs is a hero”
｜Translation and editing: Akiko Yamaguchi, Takayuki Masuda
｜Image: Cover of “SBF: How The FTX Bankruptcy Unwound Crypto’s Very Bad Good Guy” (Wiley)
｜Original: Why Author Brady Dale Is ‘Drowning’ in Sam Bankman-Fried